The Home Office presented a new law for approval by Parliament on January 11, 2016 that would raise visa fees over the next four years, in line with its goal to reduce taxpayer contributions toward the border, immigration and citizenship system and ensure the system is fully funded by foreign nationals who use it. Additionally, fee increases for some immigration services are expected to come into force in April 2016.
Key Fee Increases
Some proposed visa fee increases include:
- Visit, study and work visa fees will likely increase by 2%. For example, the cost of a three-year Tier 2(General) /(Intra-Company Transfer) visa would increase from GBP 564 to GBP 575.
- Settlement, residence and nationality fees will likely increase by 25%. For example, an application for Indefinite Leave to Remain would cost GBP 1,875 instead of the current GBP 1,500.
An increase of up to 33% is proposed for the optional fast-track services for both in-country and overseas applications.
The Home Office intends to introduce further legislation to Parliament before April 2016 to implement the fee increases.
What This Means for Foreign Nationals
Foreign nationals should be prepared to pay higher visa and immigration application fees later this year.